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Russia, the world’s third biggest wheat exporter last season, may harvest less wheat than in 2010, when the country had the worst drought in at least 50 years and banned exports, SovEcon said.
Russia planted about 2 million hectares (4.9 million acres) less wheat this year than in 2010, and actual average yields are now lower, the Moscow-based researcher said in a statement on its website today. Wheat production this year is estimated at 49 million metric tons, compared with 41.5 million tons in 2010, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
“Seriously incomplete wheat harvest will lead to a reduction of exports and domestic demand,” SovEcon said. Andrei Sizov Jr., managing director at the company, was not able to provide an actual yield number when contacted today. A crop estimate was also not provided.
Wheat prices have climbed 31 percent this year, partly on speculation dry weather will curb supplies from Russia. Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich and Agriculture Minister Nikolai Fedorov are expected to discuss grain supplies tomorrow, according to the government’s press service and Dmitry Bobkov, the Agriculture Ministry spokesman.
Russia was the world’s third-biggest wheat exporter after the U.S. and Australia in 2011-12, according to USDA estimates. This year, it’s forecast to slump to fifth place, with exports of 12 million tons behind the U.S., Australia, Canada and the European Union, USDA data show.
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